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Where is Lamar?

A couple of respected local political players asked me yesterday how come the HISD school name changing deciders had not put Lamar High on the list. They both told me that Lamar was a bad actor. The fella believed in the total elimination of Native Americans and he also was involved in the slave business. I hope leaving Lamar off the list is not political. A number of big time H-Town folks attended Lamar if you know what I mean.

Hey, don’t worry! They want to change the name, not the fact that you went there.

Carlos Correa won the June AL Rookie of the Month Award. Who was the last ‘Stro to win AL Rookie of the Month Award?

I really don’t want the Texas AG investigation to get partisan.

In today’s Chron, the AG’s mouthpiece says the investigation is political and kind of goes after the special prosecutors. That is expected. Here is the article:
http://www.houstonchronicle.com/news/politics/texas/article/Paxton-spokesman-special-prosecutors-spar-over-6364088.php.

Here is the response from the special prosecutors:

STATEMENT OF KENT SCHAFFER & BRIAN WICE, SPECIAL PROSECUTORS

The statement made by Mr. Paxton’s spokesman recycles the usual sound bites, culled from the play book of any public official whose conduct places them in the cross-hairs of a grand jury investigation.

Neither the TSSB, nor the Dallas and Travis County District Attorney’s Offices, have looked at the matters which we have been tasked with investigating through the same prism as we have, or with the benefit of the evidence being assembled by the Texas Rangers, that none of these agencies had before them.

Indeed, both the Dallas and Travis County District Attorney’s Offices declined to “pursue a criminal action” precisely because they concluded that neither office had jurisdiction over the conduct giving rise to this investigation.

While Mr. Paxton implies that being from Houston is a reason why our investigation is politically-motivated, his silence as to why our hometown comes within a time zone of relevance speaks volumes.

We were brought in from Houston to ensure that an investigation that could have easily been driven by partisan politics and political agendas would not. While Mr. Paxton would seem to prefer that this investigation be conducted by experienced prosecutors from North Texas, no one who is the subject of a grand jury investigation, least of all one of the top public officials in Texas, gets to make that call.

Tellingly, Mr. Paxton feels that a Dallas address or a career spent as a prosecutor somehow trumps our over seven decades of trial and appellate experience as two of Texas’s most respected criminal lawyers. The facts, which Mr. Paxton would rather ignore than acknowledge, are, as Churchill said, stubborn things. And that’s exactly what we will provide the grand jury with: the facts. Our investigation will continue to be informed by what our oaths as special prosecutors commands: to do justice. And sound bites and personal attacks won’t change that.

It is interesting that the AG’s mouthpiece doesn’t attack the Texas Rangers.

Here is what we don’t need. The Lone Star Project fella should just stay out of it. He is just giving the Paxton side some ammo. Check this:

What do Greg Abbott and Dan Patrick have to say about their political ally and our state’s attorney general facing potential first degree felony charges?

Ken Paxton followed Greg Abbott as state attorney general. They are political allies and if Paxton is forced to leave office early, Abbott will have to appoint his successor. As attorney general, Greg Abbott condemned the type of crimes that Paxton had admitted committing. When questioned about the Paxton scandal, Abbott pleads ignorance on the charges, but “coddles” Paxton with praise and support. Texans deserve to hear specifically what their Governor thinks about the facts of the case and what his intentions would be if Paxton is forced to leave office.

Similarly, Dan Patrick and Paxton are ideological soul-mates who both came to power by vilifying primary opponents and appealing to tea party Republicans. Just last week, in a clear play to stir up tea party activists, Patrick and Paxton coordinated the request and delivery of an advisory opinion on marriage equality. Texans deserve to know if Dan Patrick will stand behind Ken Paxton. Does he plan to initiate any oversight within the state Senate on the Attorney General’s office? Will he continue to seek legal advice from an embattled attorney general who may soon face indictment?

We really don’t need this partisan piling on. Don’t give them any ammo.

The Hackbirds fired one of their hackers and the fired hacker is blaming the ‘Stros.

Well SpringerDinger is dinged up and will sit out six weeks or so – BUMMER!

That’s the last thing we need, but that is baseball.

At the halfway point I have to admit that I am already scoreboard watching. I also think Correa has the lead for Rookie of the Year and the Skipper for Skipper of the Year.

Pitcher Collin McHugh of course won the AL Rookie of the Month Award last September.

We are in Fenway for three this holiday weekend and Commentary hopes you enjoy watching the fireworks, going to parades, watching the hot dog eating contest, and maybe talking a little politics as you celebrate the Fourth of July! Be nice and be careful!

Memo to Dems

It looks like the Texas AG is in very hot water. Memo to fellow Dems: Do not politicize the current investigation. Let the assigned special prosecutors handle business and do their jobs. They are not partisans.

If Dems start piling on, all you are doing is giving the AG and his supporters ammo to fight back with and the next thing you know it is a GOP versus Dem deal and in a place like Collin County we lose. And don’t send out a piling on piece that also asks for money.

The special prosecutors are very able attorneys. Just let them do their business. Don’t make it political.

What was our record at the halfway point last season?

Winning sure does make for a better experience at The Yard these days. Last night we enjoyed dollar dogs and stayed for the entire three and half hours as we swept last season’s AL Champs. I am thinking the Royals might end up being our rivals over the next few years.

Now we face a test of sorts as we begin this weekend a ten game roadie that takes us through Fenway, Cleveland, and the Trop. We have a five game lead so it will be interesting to see where we are at when we reach the All Star break.

At the halfway point last season we were 35-46 and fifteen games back of course.

We may pull this off for #VoteAltuve.

It is your duty to go online before tonight and vote for Jose Altuve 35 times to make the AL All Star team starting second baseman. It will just take a few minutes of your day. Heck, everyone in my family voted! Our H-Town pride is on the line. Vote today and vote often and urge your co-workers, family, and enemies to do the same! Si se puede?

The team doesn’t return until Friday, July 17 when we host the Rangers. That’s two straight weekends without baseball at The Yard.

We have the most wins in the AL and we still are not on the ESPN Sunday Night Baseball schedule. We will get there.

PSA: #VoteAltuve

It is your duty to go online before tomorrow night and vote for Jose Altuve 35 times to make the AL All Star team as the starting second baseman. It will just take a few minutes of your day. Heck, my Mom voted! Our H-Town pride is on the line. Vote today and vote often and urge your co-workers, family, and enemies to do the same! Si se puede?

From CEWDEM on my take yesterday on Ben Hall calling out State Rep. Sylvester Turner and grocery store choices in Acres Homes:

Don’t want to be tacky but the Food a Rama is a former Randall’s and is a really nice store. I go down and shop there sometimes. There is also a fairly new Joe Vu’s owned by HEB that is packed all the time. HEB made a commitment to the community years ago to build a major installation in the area. Don’t know if this qualifies, but sure does lots of business and they have all the freshest produce you could want. Maybe Ben needs to get out and drive around a bit.

What is our best record after 80 games?

Pulitzer Prize winning columnist Lisa Falkenberg takes on the new Sheriff today on his lack of women on his command staff. The sheriff didn’t want to talk so she talked to Hunker Down. Here is a part of the column:

Since commissioners appointed (Ron) Hickman to serve out (Adrian) Garcia’s term, I asked County Judge Ed Emmett what he thought of the sheriff’s exclusion of women.

“Typically, somebody comes in, they’re going to bring in people they trust,” Emmett said. “The fact that Sheriff Hickman didn’t have any women, that wouldn’t have been my choice. But you know, it’s his operation to run, and we have to wait and see how it pans out.”

Now, Emmett also pointed out, and I was able to confirm, that Garcia went through most of his first term without a woman on his command staff. But one has to wonder why Hickman was so quick to fire one seasoned female commander and demote another.

Here is the entire column: http://www.houstonchronicle.com/news/columnists/falkenberg/article/Sheriff-sent-the-wrong-message-with-his-6359356.php.

Tsk, tsk, tsk to all of the above. Now that is what I don’t call gravitas!

Last night’s gully washer was a doozy. Props to the folks that made it to our meet and greet last night. And thanks for bringing some checks.

Thanks to the SpringerDinger last night, it is a free Chick-fil-A for lunch for many today!

Last night’s Evan Gattis triple was a good reason to keep Tal’s Hill. Without the hill, Royals center fielder Lorenzo Cain would have probably had to have been scraped off of the fence.

The 1980 ‘Stros were 49-31 after 80 games. We are 46-34 today.

Tonight we reach the halfway point of the season. We have a four game lead. We have the most wins in the AL. What else can you ask for?

Ben and Sylvester

The seventh Mayoral Forum of the season was held in City Council District D last night. If you weed out the handlers, politicos, and so on, the crowd was mostly older African American – all likely voters.

The set up. At forums, State Rep. Sylvester Turner always touts his 26 years of service and his continued residence in Acres Homes. The subject of food deserts came up and Ben Hall dissed Turner’s years of service and pointed out that the best Acres Homes could do in attracting grocery stores was a Food-o-rama – suggesting that Turner’s years of service hasn’t helped much in getting better food choices in his community – ouch. I am wondering if Ben’s line of attack will continue in African American settings. Food fight anyone?

Rebuild H-Town also got smacked around last night. Council Member Steve Costello was the only defender which comes as no surprise.

Among active MLB pitchers, who has the most career shutouts?

The headline of today’s front page of the Chron: Many clerks ignore Paxton’s advice.

That doesn’t surprise me. AG Paxton is sabre rattling from the confines of his office. County Clerks are a part of the community. They didn’t run for their office to be some sort of moral authority or ideologue. They didn’t run for office so they could judge their neighbors. Good for them!

Paxton is playing to his base, but his base doesn’t represent who we are – got it?

Today is another fundraising deadline.

There is not much else you can say about NBC other than to say they did the right thing in regards to Donald Trump. No mas!

Jose Altuve made up some ground in the latest AL All Star Game balloting. I don’t know if he has enough time to catch up though.

Tim Hudson of course leads all active MLB pitchers with 13 career shutouts.

The ‘Stros now lead the AL in wins with 45. Dallas Keuchel has three career shutouts and he starts tonight against the Royals.

Commentary traveled all over the country back in 2000 working for the Dem ticket. When we lost Bush v. Gore that December, I think I may have dropped a couple or so MF bombs on five of the Supremes and moved on the next day and prepared for W. Same for Citizens United.

Our state GOP leadership are acting like first class sore losers on marriage equality. The Supremes have ruled so get with it. Marriage equality exists in Texas. Same sex couples can now be legally married in Texas. It is OK to drop a few MF bombs on the Supremes. But it is now time to move on. Millions of Texans support and embrace the decision made by the Supremes. What is the point of trying to build barriers when you have already been run over?

The Texas AG put out his take yesterday saying county clerks could ignore the Supremes. I wonder how many lawyers in the AG’s office actually believe their boss and that take. That is not what they were taught in law school. That is why they call it the SUPREME Court.

You kind of get the feeling that the state’s GOP leadership are in Jade Helm mode and want the President to send in the National Guard to enforce marriage equality. That’s not going to happen as GOP county clerks throughout the state are already following the law.

I get that the state’s GOP leadership is playing to their base, but I believe the majority of Texans think it is time to look forward. And the leadership will pay a price at the polls in the future for ignoring the rule of law.

Like Lt. Governor Dan Patrick likes to say: “It’s a new day in Texas!”

Name the two teams with the best record in the AL?

Commentary doesn’t have a problem with burying the Texas Dem’s Two Step. One Step is OK with me. I wonder if they will ever do away with the precinct convention.

Commentary invested the past thirteen Sunday nights on “American Odyssey” and I feel like they left me holding a bag of sorts last night. Is that it? What happened to the kid?

Close to 140,000 fans went out to The Yard to see the ‘Stros and Yankees split four. That is pretty good.

The two best teams in the AL are the Royals at 44-28 and the ‘Stros at 44-34 of course.

The Royals and ‘Stros begin a three game series tonight at The Yard. Try to get a game in this week because after Wednesday they won’t be home until after the All Star break when they host the Rangers on Friday, July 17.

Drawing the Line

Thank you, SCOTUS!

Get with it Texas!

HISD Board President Rhonda Skillern-Jones and State Sen. Rodney Ellis are taking the lead in renaming some HISD schools. Have at it. Here is from the Chron:

Rhonda Skillern-Jones said she plans to discuss the issue with her fellow trustees at an upcoming meeting. Superintendent Terry Grier added that he is “strongly considering” recommending that the board change the names.

And:

State Sen. Rodney Ellis, D-Houston, sent a letter to the Houston Independent School District Wednesday urging the renaming of six campuses named after Confederate army officers or others tied to the Confederacy: Dowling, Jackson and Johnston middle schools and Davis, Lee and Reagan high schools.

“Remembering our past is important, especially if you want to avoid making the same mistakes,” Ellis wrote. “But we can teach our students about the evils of the past without endorsing the actions of those who fought to uphold them. When we honor hate at our schools, we teach hate to our children.”

Here is the entire piece: http://www.houstonchronicle.com/news/houston-texas/houston/article/HISD-board-president-backs-changing-6350468.php.

I wonder if they are going to include slave owners from the past. How about those that supported segregation or opposed civil rights and voting rights. How about some of the folks that help found the state of Texas and nearly succeeded in making Native-Americans an extinct people. These same folks also made Texas a slave-owning state. How does one define hate? I wonder where they will draw the line. I am glad Board President Skillern-Jones and Sen. Ellis are the deciders and not me. Go for it!

Name the Yankee great who has scored the most runs as a Yankee?

Hey, if the GOP wants to have its presidential primary focus on Obamacare and same-sex marriage, go for it! Because the rest of America is leaving you behind!

Some notes from last night’s Yankee game at The Yard.

A-Roid was booed. I didn’t though.

Nobody boos Carlos Beltran these days. Folks have forgotten, maybe even forgiven, after all, it has been eleven years.

It felt like 35,000 plus were there. Actually, there were 28,000 plus change.

There was excitement in the air.

After the game the streets were packed with folks.

My Best Friend and I shared the snagging of a foul ball.

A-Roid whiffed three times.

We won four zip.

Dallas Keuchel won his ninth.

Babe Ruth of course leads all Yankees with 1,959 runs scored.

It is going to be hopping at The Yard tonight for sure as our lead is now five.

Good ‘Ol Boys

Don’t waste your time complaining to the new sheriff about his throwing a no-no against women regarding his command staff. Instead, complain to Hunker Down, after all, he wanted this fella because he possessed “gravitas.” Hey, if the new sheriff wants to hand us an issue on a gold platter in next year’s election, let him. That is not a very smart move on his part. I wonder if Hunker Down agrees.

Here is from the Chron:

The lack of women in leadership roles is worth noting because representation in the top ranks promotes a message about equity, provides role models and boosts morale, said Danielle Flanagan, an instructor of criminal justice at West Texas A&M University who studied women in policing in the Texas panhandle.

While it is common for a new sheriff to assemble a fresh lineup, Hickman’s first several assignments prompted fears among deputies and civil rights advocates that he was retreating to a leadership style of a bygone era.

Here is the Chron front page article on the female snub:
http://www.houstonchronicle.com/news/politics/houston/article/New-sheriff-names-all-male-command-post-6347787.php.

Now that’s what I call gravitas – baby!

The Yankees are in town for four. Name the former MLBer who has played in the most games all time as a Yankee?

If the Supremes rule for same sex marriage, the Harris County Clerk is going to take his sweet time in issuing marriage licenses. What is the point? Playing to your base? Not a smart move. Here is the Chron article on the delay of game, err playing games:
http://www.houstonchronicle.com/news/politics/houston/article/Stanart-no-plan-to-issue-licenses-immediately-if-6346500.php?cmpid=btfpm.

State Sen. Rodney Ellis in a Chron Op-Ed today is calling for HISD to look at changing the names of some of the schools that are named after Johnny Reb players. I don’t have a problem. Of course, one of the biggest alumni groups is the Jeff Davis Alumni. They have some pretty prominent players. I wonder what they think about this. Here is from the Sen. Ellis piece:

As an extremely diverse school district in the most diverse city in the nation, the names of our community schools should not lionize men who dedicated themselves to maintaining the ability of one human to own another. I hope that the board will use this unique opportunity to move the district in a new direction and away from a discriminatory past by creating a process to review and consider renaming schools named after Confederate stalwarts.

Here is the entire piece:
http://www.houstonchronicle.com/opinion/outlook/article/Ellis-HISD-schools-shouldn-t-honor-Confederacy-6347308.php.

There is another mayoral forum today. This one is at the River Oaks Country Club.

Derek Jeter of course was on the field for 2,747 games wearing the pin stripes.

We are still four games up and start a seven game homie against two of the better teams in the AL. The Yankees and the Royals.

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